UPDATE: Per Dylan Neal, executive producer of The Gourmet Detective: Death Al Dente, it appears that this film will premiere on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries September 25th, date subject to change.
You know how I’m always saying that I make it a point to feature the actors and actresses who are not as well-known? Well,this is one time, I do believe, that I struck gold. Some time ago, I noticed Jordana Largy in the film Anything For Love. I contacted her back then for an interview. Since that time, she has been working quite steadily. From supporting character to leading lady–pretty amazing! Thankfully, I caught up with Jordana during a somewhat recent downtime of hers to chat with her about her fast-blossoming career from its origins to her current works (which seem to be increasing by the day at a staggering pace).
RH: What inspired you to become an actress?
JL: Well, I never did think about becoming an actress when I was growing up. It just wasn’t in the realm of possibilities, if you know what I mean. It was understood and expected that I would go to college and get a regular job. Isn’t that what everyone did after all? But I will admit that doing community theater kind of lit a passion for acting within me.
I went off to college–I was studying crime and psychology. I really do like to figure out what make people tick. But I dropped out of college–the pull of acting was just too strong. Then I headed off to the Vancouver Lyric School of Acting, and I also studied at the Railtown Actor Studio. I was put on the six month fast-track program. I am happy to report that I absolutely love theater scripts.
Since you now have worked with Hallmark on several films, what do you like about working for them?
Hallmark has the nicest bunch of people working for them. They always hire such a fabulous cast and crew for every one of their productions. It’s like a family, and everyone always enjoys working together each and every day. But you can always count on some great play time as well. Even when you’re a minor cast member, you are guaranteed to have a great day. I’ve worked on many other shows for a variety of networks, and unfortunately, sometimes you are not treated as well as you are at Hallmark, especially if you’re not one of the main characters.
So tell us about your time working on Anything For Love.
Well, my part was very small, but the experience was great. Nicole Major and I played the two girls in the bar opposite Paul Greene and Patrick Gilmore. And I will tell you that Patrick was hilarious! And like I said, at Hallmark, even the small parts are treated well. I had a blast.
While The Gourmet Detective: Death Al Dente has yet to air on Hallmark Movies and Mysteries, what can you tell us about that film?
Well, this is the third installment of the film series. I am secretly hoping that it will be out by the end of summer because I’m so anxious for everyone to see it. But I played one of the leads. My character, Claudia, owns an Italian restaurant, which is where all the action takes place.
What was it like working with Brooke Burns and Dylan Neal?
Those two together are a hoot! Honestly, the environment on set was super lovely. I loved working with them so much. In addition to Dylan starring in the film, he is also an executive producer. And he did the sweetest thing for me. In my trailer, he left a note saying that he was here for me and to let him know if I needed anything. That meant so much to me. I just met Brooke for the first time during this film, and Oh My Gosh, she is so beautiful! Not only that, but she is so gracious and always quick to tell everyone “thank you.”
It does seem that Dylan tends to be “accident-prone” when it comes to these films. Anything like that happen?
(laughs) Oh, I saw the film of him setting his hair on fire! So funny. But seriously, I don’t think anything bad happened this time. There is a scene where everyone was on pins and needles when he is in a fire escape–when you see the film, you’ll know what I mean–and everyone was expecting something bad to happen. But I’m happy to report that no, Dylan didn’t injure himself. I do remember that he had a bad cold, however. It lasted for a week, but he pushed through it.
Do you have any other works coming up that you can mention?
Oh, my goodness, yes, so many! Let me start with Stranger in The House, which already aired on Lifetime. I had no idea it was airing until the day it was on. You might be able to catch it on a rerun. It starred some amazing people that Hallmark people might know: Emmanuelle Vaugier, Matthew MacCaull, Karen Holness, Dan Payne. If you get a chance, be sure to check it out. In fact, I understand it is re-airing on Lifetime Movie Network on July 9.
I also have a movie with Shenae Grimes-Beech and Samantha Ferris called Newlywed and Dead. I just found out that it will be airing on Lifetime Movie Network on July 2, so be sure to look it up.
But the best news of all is that I am in my first Hallmark Christmas movie! We just finished filming Finding Father Christmas. I play a supporting role as the best friend of the lead character played by none other than Erin Krakow! What an incredibly lovely woman she is, and so very sweet!
But I have more. Amongst other things, watch out for Come and Find Me, a film with Aaron Paul, whom you might know from Breaking Bad. I also got to be in a film called Rememory with Peter Dinklage, from Game of Thrones. He is such a lovely man. Coming up in 2017 is something called Monser Trucks. I play Rob Lowe’s secretary. I’m even filming right now, but I’ll tell you more about that when I can.
Wow, this has been a great year for you! I actually set up to DVR the Lifetime films you mentioned right as we were talking. (pause) So, do you have any plans in the future to direct or write?
Well, let me tell you, I am a super Type-A personality. I tend to be a control freak, and that means I could be a director, I suppose. I have a lot still to learn. With writing, I have some ideas, but sometimes I’m a bit insecure about my ideas. I need to get over that, and just jump in. Maybe I will one day.
What do you like to do in your free time?
I love to eat, and I love to do Yoga. I also love baking. In fact, I took cooking classes while in Paris and learned to make croissants. I also help out with Project Limelight, which is a nonprofit organization here in Vancouver that provides a free musical theater program for kids. It’s kind of nice to be able to give back to the community like that, and it is something I truly enjoy.
When I first set up this interview, I had no idea that Jordana would be so busy (I doubt she did either). I merely saw an actress with remarkable talent who was (and is) willing to play whatever role is given to her. Just as other actors have said, you never know what’s going to happen next–that’s the nature of the business. And with Jordana, she is finally having that much-coveted opportunity to display her talents to their full potential. And you know what her response is? She is loving every moment of it! She has refused to let it go to her head, and she’s enjoying every phase of this fantastic ride. Some might worry that Jordana’s innate sweetness and kindness will be altered as she tastes success, but here’s why I don’t think that will happen. Jordana is fully aware of the fact that as “easily” as this privileged position has come her way, it could be just as easily snatched from her grasp. She has labored arduously to be in this position, and she knows that the very second she begins “resting on her laurels,”so to speak, that is the perfect recipe for disaster. Jordana is a woman who is finally coming into her own, and within the next few years, I predict that Hallmark may put her in the preferred class of leading ladies at the network. But no matter what, I am convinced that Jordana will remain grounded and as gracious as she is now. Be sure to watch the films I mentioned above, but also, do not forget to respectfully inquire of Hallmark when the next Gourmet Detective film will air–we’ve been waiting an exceptionally long time! Also, be sure to follow Jordana at the various links below lest you overlook any of her updates!